Tips and guidelines of writing an art history research paper Essay

Art; what is art? For some people it’s merely things magical and for others, those who look for more realistic appreciation, for them, art is all the emotional power to exhilarate the understanding of anything artistic. Unfortunately, it is one those subjects, which is not given importance in the high school years of learning. Those that are passionate about it and have a critical eye however eye blind they maybe, must start perusing this subject when they are at the college level of their studies.

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Art is also not just colors and paints. It goes far beyond to the realms of music, painting, dance and literature. As a writer myself, I firmly believe that we can create art by the words we choose and more so, the palette of words are for more than they are in the colors. It all, combined and separate forms mystical objects, which stir a tornado of feelings inside a person, making him more human than he ever was.

And just like art, history is another subject, same on the epidermis but different in roots. History can in another word be called the time machine, it records all the tiniest details of things that happen or has happened in the world, in its every corner and then it uses recourses like music, painting and literature to transport us back into that specific time for us to see the culture, lives and people of that time. This is what history does, with its aliases.

To be more specific here and focus on the history of art, there is more than words can hold and as such, people who start studying art only in their colleges face the problem of not knowing how to consume all the limitless art from the past into their limited research paper. To make things easy for them, this art history research paper is aimed at making writing research paper easy for students.

The guidelines for writing art history research paper are as per follow but while writing an art history research paper is it to be remembered that all the ways mentioned below are not to be used in a single research paper but they are different ways of writing art history research paper.

A formal analysis:

A formal analysis is the major type of expounding on craftsmanship and frequently the main instructed in any starting craftsmanship history course. In a strict formal analysis, no other data is required other than that which you can see, and keeping in mind that some information of the topic helps, your emphasis ought to be on the visual components of a work. A formal analysis centers on viewpoints like line, shading, organization, and style, and portrays the impact of these aesthetic choices on the watcher. While any formal analysis must utilize a decent arrangement of depiction, it is imperative to recall that even an unadulterated formal analysis should dependably be postulation driven and each point should attach back to the general understanding of the work.

The formal analysis of writing art research paper was introduced by a British art cleric Rodger Fry. He help developed the method that we use today in our writings. Analyzing a solitary masterpiece, particularly an artistic creation, as far as particular visual segments was not new. A standout amongst the most powerful frameworks was made by the seventeenth century French Academician Roger de Piles (1635-1709). His book, The Principles of Painting, turned out to be extremely famous all through Europe and showed up in numerous dialects. An eighteenth century English version deciphers de Piles’ terms of analysis as: organization (made up of creation and manner or configuration), drawing, shading, and articulation.

Research paper:

A workmanship history research paper can take an assortment of structures, contingent upon the planned gathering of people of the work and the points of the author. An iconographic investigation centers on the delegate iconography of a work, considering the emblematic part of pictures, the verifiable or legendary personality of figures, and whatever other components that may have a visual noteworthiness. Research papers may likewise center around the historical points of interest of the craftsman, for example, the story of Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel, or the association between Van Gogh’s

Starry Night and the craftsman’s psychological wellness. They may likewise consider such factors as support and social setting and utilize these to put the work inside a chronicled structure. In all cases, it is vital to adjust foundation research with investigation that binds these realities back to the work itself. By and large, you will depend on the standards of formal examination to move down a portion of your cases.

Comparative analysis:

Correlations of two centerpieces are frequently utilized as a part of both research papers and exam reactions. They give a chance to join formal analysis with information of the specialists, the subjects, and applicable foundation data expected to make derivations about the connection between the two works. Start by soliciting yourself what viewpoints from the two works emerge as especially eminent and regardless of whether these characteristics are shared. A correlation regularly begins with similitude’s; if the two works share an expressive foundation, have a similar craftsman or relative period, or delineate a similar subject, specify the shared trait as reason for setting up an examination. At that point, proceed onward to the courses in which the two works vary, starting with the undeniable and proceeding onward to the more inconspicuous what’s more, particular. Finish up each point by breaking down what this distinction may uncover.

The comparative analysis begins with a formal analysis of at least two individual pieces, and afterward includes another level of talk that assesses pertinent likenesses and contrasts between the pieces. This additional level is helpful in uncovering insights about patterns inside chronicled periods, local similitude’s, or development of an individual craftsman after some time.

Here is an example of an art research paper using three different tools, as mentioned above:

As per Charles Millard in The Later Monet, Monet did not totally and completely surrender an established style; rather, he effectively coordinated auxiliary standards inside an impressionist structure. Remarking on John Rewald’s introduced that “When a craftsman embraces his work, certain optical conditions introduce themselves to him by which he is bound. Not all things are conceivable consistently,” Millard contended that Monet just yielded certain parts of each style and introduced the fine art with the goal that it held the positive characteristics of both (Rewald 192). Right off the bat, the introduce that not all things are conceivable basically implies that it is difficult to coordinate both authenticity and clear brush strokes of impressionism into a solitary bit of craftsmanship. Since genuine scenes are loaded with exact subtle elements, keeping up that authenticity would not be attainable. This is the correct test that Monet was looked with. In addition, Monet did not just pick a style and tail it all through his profession as Bouguereau did with traditional workmanship; rather, he found a work around.

For instance, Water Lilies was tricky for Monet since this scene required clear auxiliary properties, for example, a skyline. In painting a scene that required clear geometric limits like a skyline, it was not practical to join both a geometric properties and distinctive brush strokes as they clashed with each other. Making a sensible skyline with impressionism was the significant issue that Monet confronted. Keeping in mind the end goal to ease this issue, Monet disposed of the skyline by and large by concentrating on the scene inside a limited space as opposed to the entirety.

By differentiation, Bouguereau’s work of art and his lessons spoke to a solitary bound together established style. A 1905 Art audit, Brush and Pencil, commented that “his work will stand dependably… as splendidly speaking to the classists, who, drove by Ingres, were promised to formal subjects in Greek draperies with an eye to regular line and shading” (Brush, 83). The Young Shepherdess, painted in 1895, exemplified this traditional style amid a similar time that Monet was utilizing Impressionism. In the work of art, the scene and plants all consider authenticity important. From the dull dark colored earth to the young lady with ratty and wrinkled garments, all of detail is represented. It without a doubt speaks to the “smoothness in shading” and “excruciating [accuracy] in displaying and drawing” that Brush and Pencil contended (Brush, 83). Without a doubt, as his model he additionally utilized the face and dress of a worker lady as he normally brushed, (83). At last, his style did not change and he didn’t ride the flood of impressionism that French painters like Monet and his partners were utilizing vigorously. In this way, the specialized precision and components of authenticity were steady all through his profession.

All through his profession, Monet tried different things with various components of both impressionism and established craftsmanship before at last painting Water Lillies. Bathers, by Renoir additionally bolstered that it is without a doubt to testing to join them as having the two styles cooperate is to a great degree troublesome due to their confinements. Though established workmanship alluded to geometric exactness and watchful tender loving care impressionism utilized distinctive brush strokes, serious shading contrasts and absence of detail.


  • Research Basics – Art History Research & Writing – Yale University
  • Guide for Art History Writing – Cornell College
  • Guidelines for Writing Art History Research Papers – Department of Art

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